Navy Times Articles on USS San Francisco
As I discussed earlier, the Navy Times printed some excerpts from E-mails from crewmen assigned to the San Francisco, in at least one case against that Sailor's wishes. The article that discusses the first-hand accounts is here. Since the Navy Times is all about "fair use" excerpts, here's mine:
"Leaning against the ship’s control panel, one hand clutching a hand grip, Hager was busy changing the expected soundings for a new depth on his charts. The ship had just moved into deeper water.
"And then it happened. A submariner’s worst nightmare became reality: undersea collision.
"Hager plowed headfirst into the control panel, punching his palm through a thick Plexiglas gauge. His leg was crushed after the quartermaster of the watch rammed into Hager’s chair, sending it “flying more than 15 feet,” and pinning Hager’s leg against a hydraulic valve and the control panel.
"In his e-mail, obtained and verified by Navy Times, Hager described the force of the impact in layman’s terms. Imagine a recreational vehicle full of people slamming into a concrete wall at about 40 mph, he said, and then trying “to drive the damn thing home” while dealing with serious casualties."
All in all, I'd say that it sounds like a pretty good article, and fair to the crew as well. While I don't like the fact that the Navy Times used what was meant to be a personal communication with the Chief's community against the will of the author, I'm glad they didn't turn it into some sort of hatchet job. The main thing that I've taken away from the grounding was the high state of training and professionalism of the crew in getting their crippled ship home, and the obvious brotherly love that they've all shown towards MM2 (SS) Joseph Ashley and his family. The other article is excerpts from the E-mails sent out by SubPac immediately after the collision that have been discussed elsewhere many times before.